Family and Culture

“Terms to Know”

Family system- Family members acting together with their different roles and personalities.

Culture- Everything about the way a group of people live.

Diversity- Varied differences in people.

Enculturation- The process by which each generation passes along what it has learned to the next.

Subculture- A culture shared by a group of people who live with a larger, different culture.

Ethnic identity- A group of people who share traits and customs based on a common background or heritage.

Culture shock- The difficulties and feelings of uneasiness people have when exposed to another culture.

Assimilation- Adopting the habits, customs, and patterns of a new culture.

Cultural heritage- The beliefs, customs, and traits that are passed down among generations.

Ethnocentrism- The belief that a person’s own culture is the best or most natural.

Stereotypes- Standardized idea about the qualities or behavior of a particular category of people.

Prejudice- An unfair or biased opinion, often about certain religious, political, racial, or ethnic group.

*Discrimination- Treatment or consideration based on class or category rather than individual merit; partiality or prejudice.

*Multicultural- Of, relating to, or including several cultures.

*Racism- The belief that race accounts for differences in human character or ability and that a particular race is superior to others.

*Race- A local geographic or global human population distinguished as a more or less distinct group by genetically transmitted physical characteristics.

*Equity- The state, quality, or ideal of being just, impartial, and fair.

*Equality- The state or quality of being equal.


Definitions were compiled from:

Sasse, C.R. (2000). Families Today. New York, NY: Glenco, McGraw-Hill.

*The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition